Current Students and Staff

// University News

21 Oct 2015

Most male fans are in favour of more active involvement of women in football

A national survey has shown that most men interested in football in Britain would welcome more women into the sport as fans, coaches, board members and match officials. 

The online survey received responses from over 2,000 fans, 83% of whom were men. Almost half the respondents were in the 46 and over age bracket, broadly reflecting the make-up of top level football crowds in England. 

The findings include:

  • 75% of men think media coverage of women’s sport has increased since London 2012. Only 65% of females thought the same
  • 91% of males would welcome more female fans at football
  • 90% would like more female football journalists
  • 86% would like to see more women on club boards. 

Male resistance is a little stronger with regards to officiating and coaching, but a large majority still favour change here: 

  • 75% of males would be happy with more female coaches
  • And 75% would welcome more female referees. 

The research, conducted by Jamie Cleland (Loughborough University) and John Williams (University of Leicester) in collaboration with academics at other UK universities, also found: 

  • One in three male fans (31%) now follow the fortunes of their club’s women’s team
  • 29% had attended a women’s match. 

Highlighting the increasing exposure given to women’s football, 34% of the participants used the official club website for news and information on women’s teams, whilst 35% engaged in social media (Facebook, Twitter and fan message boards) to follow their progress. 

Read the full press release for more information.